Yankees’ Chad Green trade could be surprise deadline deal of 2022

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The 2022 New York Yankees have used a combination of elite pitching (rotation and bullpen) and above-average offense to climb atop the AL East in the early going. Surely, that means they wouldn’t even consider trading from a position of strength and shaking things up at the deadline.

Eh … think again. You only have to take a quick peek at the roster and a look back to 2018 to get your answer. They might not tinker or give up anything other than prospects, but they might also hybrid-sell, like they did with Adam Warren back in ’18, to everyone’s shock.

When Warren was dealt to the Mariners in exchange for international bonus money, he was soaking up valuable innings in his final year of team control, holding a 2.70 ERA in 24 appearances and striking out 37 men in 30 innings. His FIP was right in line with that level of success (3.29). For all intents and purposes, Warren was a key cog in the Yanks’ bullpen.

And yet, as he approached free agency, New York dealt him anyway, receiving only money … that eventually went towards the signing of Jasson Dominguez and the rest of the 2019 international class.

Do the Yankees … by any chance … have any other important bullpen pieces this season in their final year of arbitration who likely won’t be back for 2023?

Are those bullpen pieces hanging on, but aren’t quite as integral as they used to be? Just checking.

Yankees could make a 2022 trade deadline splash with a Chad Green deal

Ideally, someone like Green — whose dominant peak far outshone anything Warren (though always solid) accomplished — would net the Yankees more than just international cash to splash.

But with all their other available arms, especially after the unearthing of Clay Holmes and Michael King, it’s a bit surprising the Yanks didn’t actually deal Green ahead of the season, cutting the cord cleanly. Then again, any innings they can grab now — in the sixth, in the eighth, or in the ninth as a backup plan — are a nice bonus.

Green’s stuff doesn’t look as crisp as it used to, and he became a focal point of online hatred last season as his high-profile blowups became more frequent. According to the Statcast metrics, though, Green is regressing, but isn’t so far gone. He still ranks in the 63rd percentile for average exit velocity and 79th percentile for fastball spin (all he can really control), though his hard-hit percentage has him in the difficult-to-stomach 24th percentile.

Will the Yankees continue to ride with Green as he wears down in August and September? Or will they look to pull off a deadline surprise, adding a different bullpen piece or bench reinforcement while also jettisoning Green for, say, someone’s top-15 prospect?

With free agency all but assured, it wouldn’t be shocking to see a shuffle there if Green’s trends remain in place.